For Advent, Card Sako calls on people to pray for Iraq and its northern region, the cradle of the country's Christians. He appeals to those who have fled in recent years to come back and rebuild in order to "live happily and peacefully”. He stresses the need for an overall development plan, starting from health.
The four "neighborhoods" of diocesan priests. "Being close to God in prayer", "being close to the bishop, always close to the bishop: without the bishop the Church does not move forward, without the bishop the priest can be a leader but he will not be a priest. Third closeness: to be near fellow priests, near to eachother”. "And the fourth closeness: closeness to the people of God".
In the prayer composed for the Immaculate, Francis said that "it is not the same to be a sinner and to be corrupt: it is very different. It is one thing to fall, but then, repent, confess and get up again with the help of God's mercy. Another thing is the hypocritical connivance with evil, the corruption of the heart, which is impeccable outside, but inside it is full of bad intentions and petty selfishness”.
Francis reflects on the spirit of service expressed in Mary’s response to the Angel who asked her to become the mother of Jesus. This afternoon he will pay homage to the Immaculate. At the Angelus Francis invites prayers for tomorrow’s will in Paris to find solutions to the conflict in Ukraine.
Francis meets non-governmental organizations of Catholic inspiration, which have gathered in the last two days in Rome. "We need more imagination, new ways of encountering culture".
In the speech prepared for "Aggiornamenti Sociali" a Italian Jesuits magazine, Francis states that the preferential option "before rushing to their aid, this option requires that we be on their side, even when we look at the dynamics of society."
The head of Tehran's diplomacy against countries that say they support the nuclear deal, but end up following the line of sanctions. For the Islamic Republic it is a "necessary and important" issue. Minister of Health: "very hard" year for medicines, drugs and medical equipment.
The Holy Land has "never before seen" such a political situation, which generates "instability". Rebuilding from ruins is strengthening a sense of community. Economic migrants to the Holy Land are "an integral part" of the life of the Church. Bethlehem is not only a place but an "invitation" to a different lifestyle.
The proposal is in a message signed by Francis and Al-Tayeb delivered yesterday to the UN General Secretary who expressed his appreciation and support for the initiative.
"We cannot build our lives on passing things, on appearances, on pretending that all is well. Let's go to the rock, where there is our salvation. And we will all be happy there. All".
The Iranian president hopes for the release of those who have demonstrated peacefully and unarmed. He invokes the "religious and Islamic clemency". Activists speak of 208 victims, but according to some deaths would be about 400. At least 200 thousand people involved, 7 thousand arrested but there are no independent confirmations.
The archbishop of Colombo was invited by the Palestinian ambassador to the Christmas tree lighting ceremony at the Embassy. For the occasion, an oil lamp was brought from Bethlehem. For the cardinal, peace will never be achieved unless “Palestinians live with dignity in their own state". The three great religions “must learn to unite people, not divide them” whilst “world powers must not intrude”.
Francis writes to the UN Climate Conference in Madrid. 4 years on from the signing of the Paris agreement the awareness of climate change " is still rather weak, unable to respond adequately to that strong sense of urgency for rapid action called for by the scientific data at our disposal." And current studies "show how far words are from concrete actions".
The Chaldean patriarchate cancelled all Christmas and New Year celebrations. The money saved will go to orphanages and hospitals, to treat the wounded. Christians are part of Iraq’s "reform movement” for a pluralist "new Iraq", but they also need "support" from the West. Christians must "read the signs of the times" and assert that "Christ is for everyone".
"Faith is trusting abandonment into the hands of a trustworthy God Who makes Himself known not through occult practices but through revelation and with freely-give love". The memory of Father Popieluszko, killed by the communist police. In the meeting with the Governing Council of Solidarnosc the relations between Church and State.